The final design for the railway park in the north of Rotterdam was presented on Friday. For almost a hundred years, the Hofplein line was the rail connection between Rotterdam and The Hague-Scheveningen, but soon visitors will be able to walk between the treetops of the surrounding streets, relax and exercise in a park.
The former railway line through the north of Rotterdam used to form a barrier in the city, but in the new situation it should connect neighborhoods and stimulate new developments. Visitors can reach the roof park via the old stations and other entrances, the former platforms function as meeting places with space for various activities and the former tracks form the routes through the park.
Just like on a train journey, the landscape changes during the two-kilometer walk, reports the municipality of Rotterdam. At Hofplein Station, the hustle and bustle of city life is central. Towards the Noorderkanaal the landscape gradually takes on a calmer character. The places on the walking path where visitors can do activities are in line with this. For example, there will be a play area with a slide at Ammersooiseplein and a ‘water platform’ will be created at Bergselaan where visitors can relax and read a book.
The Hofboogpark will have a water system that collects and purifies rainwater. To ensure that sufficient water is available in an extremely dry year, rainwater from the adjacent water square (Benthemplein) is also brought to the Hofbogenpark and purified there. The design also pays a lot of attention to the composition of plants and the creation of a habitat for various animal species, such as bees and butterflies, toads, bats, birds and hedgehogs. There will be special entrances for small animals so that they can get on and off the roof.
The Hofboogpark crosses four densely populated city districts in the north of Rotterdam and is intended to add a green and quiet place. In the long term, the streets around the Hofbogen will also gradually become greener. The ambition is to build a bridge over the A20 in the future so that the park is (ecologically) connected to Schiebroek, reports the municipality of Rotterdam.
First phase opens in 2026
The first phase of the Hofboogpark will open in 2026. The park should be completely finished by the end of 2027. The realization of the project involves an amount of 75 million euros, of which 53.7 million is intended for the construction of the roof park. The rest of the amount must be used to finance the bridge and the greening of the surrounding streets.